CHAPTER 2

Empathizing

What’s the Big Idea?

It looked like being a truly miserable overnight flight home. I found myself in economy class sitting next to an agitated young child with a teenager behind me banging her legs against my seat back. I felt tired and frustrated. I looked in vain for an alternative seat, but it was a full flight. Just before resigning myself to seven uncomfortable hours I decided to visit the galley and ask a steward if I could be moved. My expectation was to receive a polite “Sorry sir, but no. . . .” Instead, she listened carefully to what I was saying, seemed to understand my frustration, and said to my surprise, “There is a spare seat in Economy Plus you can have. Please follow me.”

This is a very small example of ...

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